Cold Case Wiki
Advertisement
Hilary West
Hilary in 1964
Hilary West
Portrayed by Johanna Braddy
Episode The Good-Bye Room
Status Deceased (1964)

Hilary West was a 17-year-old girl who was the victim in "The Good-Bye Room". She was killed shortly after giving birth at a convent for pregnant teens.

Background[]

Hilary is the daughter of Patricia and Bill West. She was a high school student when she got pregnant with her boyfriend Huck Oberland's baby. Hilary gave birth to a girl on May 29, 1964 at St. Mary's Home For Unwed Mothers.

History[]

Hilary was scared when she found out she was expecting because nobody told her she could become pregnant after her and Huck's first time. She thought her father would kill her and the baby. Huck told her he would marry her but when Bill found out, he decided to send Hilary to St. Mary's so she could give birth in secret. Her parents dropped her off on March 22 when she was 7 months pregnant despite her pleas.

Hilary remained optimistic during her stay at the convent that Huck would still marry her and she would get to keep her child. This clashed with the cynicism of fellow teen mother Karen Watson, who Hilary first met when Karen warned her about Dr. Finnegan.

She and Karen soon bonded while on a day trip to a music store. Hilary bought a tape recorder with a microphone and led a rendition of "Where Did Our Love Go?" with two fellow pregnant teens. She then saw Huck with another girl, Mary-Lou McLaren, much to her disbelief. Hilary reminded Huck he was her baby's father but he didn't want his future derailed by being a teen parent, prompting her to threaten to tell his parents.

Shortly after, she was visited at St. Mary's by her mother, who urged Hilary to sign the adoption papers since she was too young for motherhood. Hilary reluctantly agreed that an adoptive family could better provide for her baby, but was already attached to her child; she nicknamed her unborn baby "Sunshine" and used her new recorder to ensure they would hear her voice.

Hilary later did her best to comfort Karen when the latter was heartbroken after giving up her newborn son. She also learned St. Mary's was accepting bribes from wealthy couples to cut in the adoption line, which she also recorded.

On May 29, Hilary gave birth to a daughter. Overwhelmed upon seeing her newborn baby, Hilary decided she couldn't be a bad person after making such an "angel". Sister Margaret took pity on Hilary and gave her an opportunity to escape St. Mary's with her child. While fleeing, she was confronted by Karen in the woods. Hilary explained she was leaving with her daughter, despite her previous promise to Karen that they would get through their ordeal together. After an argument, Karen killed Hilary by striking her head with a rock, both in a jealous rage and in the midst of a delusion that Hilary was taking Karen's baby.

After Hilary's death, her daughter was adopted out, which forced Karen to realize she killed Hilary for nothing. Bill forbade Patricia to speak of their daughter afterwards.

In 2007, Hilary's daughter, now a grown woman named Barbara Lakey, discovered she was adopted and asked Detective Lilly Rush to look into her mother's still-unsolved murder. After her case is solved, Hilary's spirit appears to Barbara while she's looking through her mother's possessions from St. Mary's.

Advertisement